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Our view

The illusion that we understand the past fosters overconfidence in our ability to predict the future
DANIEL KAHNEMAN – Author of Thinking, Fast and Slow

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Changing the Conversation
21st Club presents a collection of insights for football club boardrooms

Changing the Conversation

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  • 09 Apr 2020

    Football’s revolving door

    Eddie Howe; Simone Inzaghi; Diego Simeone; Stephane Moulin; and Christian Streich. The link between the five is that they’re the longest-serving active managers in each of Europe’s biggest leagues. But their longevity is the exception rather than the rule. The typical manager in these leagues has been in post for just 29 games. And fewer […]

  • 26 Mar 2020

    One year later

    Postponing UEFA EURO 2020 until next summer may be disappointing for fans and players, but it was ultimately the only decision. Now national teams and coaches have the unique opportunity of planning for two major tournaments back to back, with the World Cup taking place the following year in Qatar. So what will the extra […]

  • 12 Mar 2020

    What can you get for a hundred grand?

    Last year, the FT ran a feature on FC Barcelona’s Innovation Hub, and about how the club is looking for new ways to gain a competitive edge. For most other clubs around the world, it is not possible to match Barcelona’s spending in areas such as analytics, sports science, nutrition, and stadium infrastructure, so it […]

  • 04 Mar 2020

    Insights from Asia: Better together

    One of the biggest opportunities for clubs in growing football markets like Asia is to work with the league to help grow the value of the competition. Broadcast rights are an increasingly significant source of revenue for Asian clubs meaning that helping to grow the value of those rights at a league level will ultimately […]

  • 27 Feb 2020

    Fix your weaknesses

    In the 2012 Champions League semi finals, Barcelona faced Chelsea. Barcelona, managed by Pep Guardiola, were widely heralded as the best team in the world, perhaps even one of the best teams in history, whereas Chelsea were finishing their worst domestic campaign in a decade. However, Guardiola found himself out of options when trying to […]

  • 20 Feb 2020

    Take a chance on me

    Buying a young player always involves risk. Making a move for them before other clubs means less competition for their signature and often secures a lower price. But judging a player based on limited game time can make getting it wrong all the more likely. As with financial investments, stepping into the market for young […]

  • 13 Feb 2020

    Second Best Leagues

    The best players tend to play in the best leagues, teams in the big 5 are often constrained to a much smaller pool of players than weaker teams elsewhere. Since 2013, 44% of transfers to the big 5 have been from other big 5 leagues, at an average price of £9.6m – all other transfers […]

  • 06 Feb 2020

    Where to find the next Mbappé

    Young talent has never been in such high demand. Transfer price inflation for under-21s is over 50% higher than for peak-age players. The more and more clubs look to identify players at source – before they’ve made a mark in senior football – the more and more important it is to understand the dynamics of […]